I ran through the streets as fast as possible trying desperately to get away. From what I'm not really certain. Panting slightly I kept running through various alleyways, after running for about 10 more minutes I stopped. Looking at my surroundings I sat down on the dirty wet ground. The alley I was in was small, cramped, and extremely dirty, although I can't imagine a clean alley.
Closing my eyes tightly I tried to clear my mind of all that had been happening, it was hopeless. It was hard to forget about things like that.
Deciding the only thing to do was run I got up and did just that, I ran and ran until I thought for sure my feet would fall off. When I finally looked up I saw I had made it to the water, there were quite a few ships but not many of them were being boarded.
One in particular caught my attention, but it most definitely wasn't because of its looks. The ship was old, rusty and in pretty bad shape, but the thing that I was drawn to were the people boarding. They weren't exactly the type of people to normally be riding on such a dirty old ship, but more of people to be on huge, beautiful, and expensive ships. One of them I recognized from the many posters covering the streets, I couldn't remember his name, but I knew he was quite famous.
My curiosity took over and I cautiously made my way closer to the ship, careful not to be seen. As I came closer I saw three people talking, one was a woman, who to me was really quite beautiful. She looked slightly confused by something an older man was saying, looking closer I saw that the man was the captain. The other man was slightly round and I immediately didn't like the look on his face….. He seemed to be planning something. Before I could find out what they were talking about another man with glasses came over and took the girl away. The girl and the man with the glasses boarded the ship.
An idea suddenly came to me…. It really wasn't a smart thing to do. But I really wanted to get away from the life I was now leading; anything would be far better then what I was going through. So I quickly made the decision that although it was a stupid idea, it was a lot better then staying here.
Right before they were about to leave I quietly snuck through the open door and quickly made my way downstairs, no one really seemed to take any noticed to me… Which was sort of odd. I guessed they were all pretty busy getting everything ready, but I definitely couldn't complain, this only made things easier for me.
Finally I came to a floor where there were cages all over the place. I was curious as to what they were for but pushed that to the back of my mind. Right now I needed to hide. Looking around I found a small corner just large enough for me to hide in, I had thought about going into one of the cages but thought for sure someone would find me there. I was silently praying that no one would find me here then I could just get off at the next stop and find somewhere to stay. It would be difficult but I didn't want to think of that, I still had a lot of other things to worry about.
After a while of sitting there I fell asleep, I was sleep deprived and starving. The life I had been living previously had taken a lot out of me, but I was leaving all of that behind. It was time to start a whole new life. But my dreams will still nothing but nightmares. Although for most they would say they were rather nice dreams…But not for me, because they reminded me of the worst.
"A little girl ran after me in the streets chasing me. 'Kattie, wait up!' she shrieked in delight. I smiled before turning around and picking the little girl up and spinning her around. I put her down and she latched on to my leg, I chuckled lightly.
'Come on Maddy, Madelyn, we need to get a move on,' I told her.
She looked up at me with her big blue eyes as her blonde curls bounced around on her head. She nodded and I took her head and we kept on running. A few times I would look down and she would be staring at me, causing her to look away and giggle."
I woke with a start covered in cold sweat and breathing heavily. I reached up and touched my cheek to find it was sticky with tears. I took a deep breath and pulled my knees tighter to me. Oh how I missed my Maddy, it seemed like just yesterday we were running through the streets with not a care in the world. Shaking my head I looked around and strained my ears. Then I heard voices…. Three I think. Listening hard I still couldn't make out what they were saying.
After a few seconds of the voices I heard footsteps coming closer to where I was hiding out. My breath caught in my throat as I pulled myself tighter against the wall, hopefully they wouldn't see me when they past.
Luckily they didn't and just kept talking as they passed my hiding spot, I didn't get to see what they looked like though. Sighing in relief I realized there was still someone else down here. Now I was starting to think about what I would do during my time here… It could be weeks, even months, before the next stop. Which meant I would have to sit here the whole time without any food or water. I really hadn't thought about this before. Beginning to panic I took a deep breath, surely there was some solution to this problem.
I was still worried about what I was going to do when I fell asleep again, only to awake shortly after. I was starving and needed something to eat, if I didn't I would surely pass out. Making a quick decision to sneak into the kitchen I looked around the corner making sure the coast was clear. Glad to see no one was there I quietly crept out of the corner and up the stairs. Now all I needed to do was find the kitchen, get something to eat, then sneak back down here. This was gonna be a lot harder then I thought.
Taking another deep breath to calm my nerves I snuck upstairs and looked for the kitchen. Finally I found it and quietly snuck in there, looking around for anything to eat. All I found was a small piece of bread and decided that was good enough, I began to leave the kitchen but right as I was about to open the door it opened. My eyes widened as the lady I saw before came through the door. Her eyes widened as she saw me, I immediately began to back away from her.
'What are you doing in here?' she whispered.
I stumbled with my words not really sure what to say, then she looked at the bread in my hand and her eyes softened.
'Did you sneak on the ship when we were leaving New York?' she asked quietly.
I nodded sadly, I really did feel bad for doing something like this. Don't get me wrong it's not like I did this kind of thing often, but that only made the guilt even stronger for me.
'Well, I won't ask why. But I have a few ideas, and since I've been there I will help you out. I will convince someone to let you work here so that you can earn your stay. Come with me and we will go talk to the captain.' Then she remembered the bread in my hand.
'You can eat that on the way, come along,' she said before turning to leave.
I followed swiftly after her shoving the bread in my mouth and eating quickly. Still I was scared to meet the captain, surely he wouldn't be as nice as this lady.
Suddenly she turned to me and I stopped quickly to stop from running into her.
'How silly of me, I forgot to introduce myself. My name is Ann Darrow, who are you?'
'Kathryn June, Miss Darrow,' I replied.
'Well that's a very pretty name Miss Kathryn June, and please call me Ann,' she insisted.
I nodded in reply as she turned and began to walk again with me following closely behind. Then we came to a door and Miss Darrow knocked, which was shortly followed by a faint come in from the other side. I swallowed hard trying desperately to bite back my nerves. Miss Darrow opened the door and we both walked in.
Standing on the other side of the door was one of the men I had seen when I first got on the ship, the captain. My nerves were going crazy and my heartbeat was increasing steadily.
'What can I do for you, Miss Darrow?' he asked still not noticing me.
'Well I have a new friend here onboard and I was wondering if she could work, to pay off her stay?' Miss Darrow asked politely.
The captain looked over at me and his eyebrows shot up, surprised he hadn't seen me before. He surveyed me closely and stepped closer staring at me, making me even more nervous.
'Another stowaway eh?' he questioned.
'Another? There's another one?' Miss Darrow asked the captain.
'Jimmy, he was a stowaway a few years ago. But anyhow, I suppose she could help, she can be your assistant and do anything you need her to do. And while you are busy shooting a scene she can help out with the cleaning. Now Miss Darrow may I talk to you alone for one moment?' he asked.
Miss Darrow nodded and they stepped outside the door. I stood there with my head down grateful they were going to let me stay here. I was still worried about a few things, but those could wait. Soon Miss Darrow came back in with the captain and after a nod from him we both made our way back out into the hall.
'He said it was alright, but you are now to stay on this ship, there's no going back,' she explained as we walked further down.
I nodded slightly, well at least now I really do have a new life, I work on this ship. That's a lot better then being kicked off the ship, definitely better.
'All right he also said that we are to find Mister Hayes and he will show you where you are to sleep,' she led me to a door and knocked.
The door almost immediately opened and someone (who I guessed was Mister Hayes) stepped out.
'What can I do for you Miss?' he asked Miss Darrow.
'You have a new worker on board Mister Hayes, Captain Englehorn told me to ask you to show her where she will be staying,' she explained carefully.
Mister Hayes' eyes snapped onto me.
'I see we have a young lady aboard,' then he turned and looked inside the room, 'Jimmy is there any room in the cage beside yours?'
Jimmy, who I remembered Captain Englehorn had said was a stowaway, must have nodded because Mister Hayes then stepped out of the room.
'Follow me, good night Miss Darrow,' he nodded his head and began to walk away.
'G'Night Miss Darrow, it was nice to meet you,' I said shyly before turning around and following Mister Hayes down the hallway.
'What's your name kid?' Hayes asked as we were descending down the stairs.
'Kathryn June sir,' I answered quietly.
As you might have noticed I'm a very shy person. Especially when it came to adults.
'Right this way, you'll be staying in the cage right beside one of our crewmembers, Jimmy. You'll have to excuse him at times, he's around your age I think. You look mighty young, how old are you?' I was becoming very curious about this Jimmy.
Hayes nodded, and continued to walk through the halls, we were now walking through the row of cages. We then came to a stop and he pointed to a cage close to where I had been hiding before.
'This is where you'll be staying, g'night,' he said before turning and leaving.
I shivered slightly, not only because of the cold but also for the feeling. Down here it felt empty and lonely. Shaking my head I climbed into the cage and lay down, hugging my legs to my chest in a ball. Silent tears began falling down my cheeks, what had I gotten myself into? Thing could really only get worse from there. Oh how I didn't know how right I really was.